The Canadian Autoworkers Union (CAW) recently issued a statement that it would be continuing the fight for worker benefits for 150 occupational illness claims which have been denied by the Worker’s Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB).
The workers in question come from the General Electric plant in Peterborough, Ontario. The CAW organized a clinic that gathered together 675 workers and retirees. From that group, a series of claims were filed with the WSIB, resulting in 112 approved claims and the 150 denials now in question.
The Peterborough GE plant has been in operation since 1892 and for nearly a hundred years – up until the mid-1980’s – workers were routinely exposed to a number of toxic substances, asbestos in particular. Asbestos exposure came from their daily work routines as well as via the insulation of the building. The fact there are multiple substances and sources of exposure has complicated the process of linking exposure to specific illnesses or symptoms.
In Other News…
Residents of some East York neighbourhoods recently received letters from the city advising them to stay indoors with the windows shut while the city tore up the asbestos-laden asphalt along the streets.
While the city downplayed the health concern, both incidents underscore the fact that decades after the material was largely banned from use in this country, it continues to be an environmental concern.
Maybe even in your home!
If your home was built before the 1970’s, you should assume it contains asbestos in one form or another. At one time, the fireproof and nearly indestructible material was considered a “miracle” construction material.
Asbestos can show up in a wide range of areas in your home. It’s not always immediately apparent to the untrained eye, and may appear in a variety of forms.
- Roof shingles and gutters
- Floor and ceiling tiles
- Vermiculite insulation
- Window and door sealing putty
- “Popcorn” or textured ceilings
- Textured interior house paints
If you are looking to buy or renovate an older home then do yourself a favour and include an asbestos inspection on the list of things to do.
The material is considered safe as long as it’s intact, but damage or deterioration can produce friable asbestos, or particles that can be inhaled – with a deadly potential. Please don’t try to handle it yourself.
Get peace of mind from GreenStream Environmental – in the Toronto area contact GreenStreamEnvironmental.ca at (416) 818-9414.
Featured in Mike Holmes’ magazine, HGTV’s Income Properties, W Network’s Love It Or List It and chosen by Homestars.com as “Best Toronto Asbestos Removal Company” based on customer ratings and reviews, GreenStream Environmental Services are fully-certified, trusted and insured professionals in the removal and disposal of commercial, industrial, institutional and residential asbestos, vermiculite and mould (hazardous and non-hazardous). Providing emergency service 24/7/365 for all of Toronto and the GTA (North York, Mississauga, Markham, Brampton, Scarborough, Ajax, Oshawa, and beyond) GreenStream has over 40 combined years of experience serving clients such as the City of Toronto, the Toronto District School Board and many more. For a free estimate in Toronto, the GTA and Southern Ontario, call today at 416-818-9414. You’ll be glad you did.
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